Correspondents theory

It’s hard to have a conversation about the foolishness of ever having started the war in Iraq without running into people who accuse you of not wanting to win. I suppose they (probably purposely) confuse you’re believing you’re right about an unwinnable war with your wishing reality would conform to your beliefs. You–the opposer of the Iraq war–think rather that your belief corresponds in some philosophically uninteresting way with reality–not t’other way round. Such a basic confusion is the only explanation behind Liz Cheney’s guest op-ed in the Washington Post.

More reprehensible than Cheney’s junior high rhetoric is Tom Friedman’s failure to come to grips with the reality of his poor judgment. The people who opposed the Iraq war as a disastrous experiment in nation-building or nation-obliterating had good reasons for their opposition. And they were right. The latter counting most of all. About their view this is what Friedman says in a recent NPR interview:

>FRIEDMAN: Look, I understand people who opposed the war. Some opposed it for military reasons, because they’re against war, some opposed it because they hate George Bush, some opposed it because they didn’t believe Arabs are capable of democracy. I wasn’t in that group. I really believed that finding a different kind of politics in collaboration with people in that region was a really important project.

>ASHBROOK: And do you really believe –

>FRIEDMAN: I’m really sorry. Next time — Next time Ishwar [caller], I promise, I really promise, I’ll be a better liberal. I’ll not in any way support any effort to bring democracy to a country ruled by an oil-backed tyranny. I promise I will never do that again. I promise I’ll be a better liberal. I will view the prospect of Arabs forging a democracy as utterly impossible. They’re incapable of democracy. I agree with you on that now.

>ASHBROOK: You’re going to sarcasm. We can feel you’ve taken your licks on this.

Hasn’t cost him him any of his media credibility however.

2 thoughts on “Correspondents theory”

  1. Many of the backers of the invasion of Iraq are now blaming the Iraqis for the disaster. Friedman “wasn’t in that group” he says, but he implies (it seems) that he believes now that a “country ruled by an oil-backed tyranny” is incapabale of democracy. Blaming the Iraqis is a total cop-out.

    Note that he and the others won’t list as a reason for opposing the war the basic premise that it would never have worked!

    (Certainly, one cannot predict what would or would not have happened had the U.S. went in with 500,000 troops; but looking at history one is lead to believe that it was the foreign occupying force that we then became after invasion that produced the insurgancy.)

    Many who opposed the war opposed the war because they did not believe that the U.S. should ever be doing such things as invading and overtrhowing another government.

    There are additional, valid reasons for opposing the war. Generally, the supporters of the war that remain in support of the war do so not for any valid or even logical reason. They do so only and solely on ideological grounds, based upon their fears of how their immediate peers will think of them (“never apologize, it’s a sign of weakness”).

    How oh so shallow American leadership and pundits really are.

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